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Rediscovering Athens: A Deeper Dive into the City’s Secret Corners!

Rediscovering Athens: A Deeper Dive Into The City’s Secret Corners!

Athens is the cradle of Western civilization, a place where history, culture, and natural beauty meet to create a paradise for locals and tourists alike. Although many think that the Parthenon, the Acropolis, the Ancient Agora, and other archaeological sites are the only places to visit in Athens city center, this is far from the truth. Behind the tourist spots and popular attractions, there are secret corners that reveal another side of Athens – a side full of surprises!

In this article, we are going to unveil the city’s hidden gems and let you in on the secrets of Athens. So, let’s dive into the city’s hidden treasures!

Savor the local food scene

Although Athens is famed for its rich history, it is also renowned for its gastronomy. Food enthusiasts will discover their culinary heaven in Athens, a city teeming with eateries catering to every palate, from international cuisine to farm-to-table delights. Therefore, if gastronomy is your passion, the scrumptious food scene of Athens will certainly excite your taste buds!

In Athens city center, numerous taverns serve authentic traditional cuisine with generations-old classic dishes, such as moussaka, souvlaki, and roasted aubergines with feta cheese. For fusion and gourmet cuisine enthusiasts, neighborhoods like Kolonaki, Pangrati, and Gazi house chic restaurants that blend Greek ingredients with international flavors, creating innovative and creative dishes that will leave you craving more. Zurbaran in Kolonaki, Spondi in Pangrati and Art Lounge in Athens city center are among the best restaurants to go to in Athens!

Wander around Anafiotika, a hidden urban island

Each neighborhood in Athens boasts its unique character and charm. Balconies adorned with flowers, picturesque narrow alleys, sophisticated cafes, and hidden boutiques make the Athenian neighborhoods perfect for exploration!

Anafiotika is one of the most distinctive Athenian neighborhoods. Nestled under the Acropolis hill and boasting a Cycladic island flair, it transports visitors to the heart of the Aegean Sea while being minutes away from the bustling city center. Whitewashed houses, colorful windows, charming courtyards, and narrow streets create an enchanting scenery that will captivate your senses!

Enjoy fun outdoor activities in Athens

Besides sightseeing and gourmet delights, Athens offers a wide variety of outdoor activities. So, grab your sunscreen, don a comfortable pair of walking shoes, and embark on an adventure in nature!

Some of the best outdoor activities in Athens are:

Hiking in Mount Parnitha

If you are a hiking enthusiast, then Mount Parnitha is the perfect place to explore scenic trails and connect with nature. With lush forests, diverse flora and fauna, gorges, hidden streams, and viewpoints that offer panoramic views of Attica and the Saronic Gulf, this mountain is fascinating. What’s more, it boasts the most extensive hiking network in Attica, offering several difficulty levels to choose from!

Jogging in the city

Running is not only one of the best outdoor activities in Athens but also a great way to take in the sights while exercising. The best time to run in Athens is just after sunrise when the city is still quiet, allowing you to enjoy it at your own pace. So, put on your running shoes and go on a sightseeing running tour, passing by some of the most important landmarks of Athens, including the Panathenaic Stadium (Kallimarmaro), the Arch of Hadrian, and the Temple of Olympian Zeus!

Swimming at Lake Vouliagmeni

If you are visiting Athens during the summer months, swimming is a must-do activity. One of the best spots for swimming in Athens is Lake Vouliagmeni, a majestic natural mineral lake located on the city’s outskirts. Surrounded by rocks, greenery, and hidden sea caves, Lake Vouliagmeni boasts a majestic natural landscape that makes swimming a dreamy experience!

Discover nightlife beyond tourist spots

Known for its vibrant nightlife, Athens comes alive when the sun sets, with crowds flocking to the hottest spots. Although Athens city center is full of well-known tourist spots, there are secret nocturnal haunts not everyone knows about!


Known as one of the most elegant and upscale neighborhoods in Athens during the day, Kolonaki transmutes into a refined nightlife haven when the sun goes down. Full of sophisticated cocktail bars, exclusive clubs, and hip wine bars, this area is the perfect place to have fun and rub shoulders with the city’s cultured elite!


Vibrant, unconventional, alternative, and full of surprises, the Exarchia neighborhood has a unique boho-chic charm that will captivate you. Home to eclectic wine bars, unique venues, and hidden speakeasies, Exarchia is fascinating to explore and get lost in. If you want to dance along with artists, innovators, nonconformists, and modern activists and redefine the notion of nightlife, then this neighborhood is a one-way destination. So, go without a plan and see where the night takes you!

Marousi and Kifisia

If you want to discover the Athens nightlife beyond the city center and escape the hustle and bustle, the ultra-chic suburbs of Marousi and Kifisia are ideal alternatives. The pulsating nightlife scene of Marousi and Kifisia includes luxurious venues, sophisticated mixology bars, opulent clubs, and upscale wine bars that will introduce you to the refined luxury of the city’s northern suburbs!

Extra tip: If you happen to stay in a hotel in Kifisia, make sure to explore during the day and indulge in a designer shopping spree surrounded by nature!

Explore the fascinating street art scene of Athens

Almost every corner of the city is adorned with beautiful street art by talented artists who bring even the most mundane walls to life. As you wander through the vibrant streets and alleys of Athens, you will come across many large outdoor murals that turn the city into a fascinating open-air museum!

Exarchia, Psyrri, Gazi, Metaxourgeio, and Anafiotika are full of urban art, whether it is graffiti art or colorful posters that inject life into hidden corners. Many of the most impressive murals are made by local artists in collaboration with businesses, so it is very common to see entire building walls covered by graffiti or even cafeterias and bars decorated with impressive street art. Exploring the urban street art scene is one of the most fun activities in Athens!

Whether you are a food lover, an art enthusiast, or a partygoer, Athens offers a plethora of experiences for every taste. Beyond the well-trodden tourist spots, there is a fascinating hidden world waiting to be discovered and explored. So, are you ready for the revelations and surprises Athens has to offer?

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